Why Use Weed Killer?

Guest Author: Luis Alberto Simauchi Jr.

When tending a family garden, proper care of the areas around your plants is required. Normally pulling weeds is sufficient but on occasion, there are those persistent strains of weed that may require more thorough methods of removal to ensure a healthy garden. A very good preventative (and relatively cheap) measure is to place mulch around your plants; this makes it harder for small weeds to grow due to the weight of the mulch above them and the reduction of sunlight exposure provided by said mulch. Even if a couple stubborn weeds did manage to pop their ugly heads above the mulch, you still have the option to pull them out or spray them with a non-selective weed killer.

weed control sprayer

Weeds are almost always bad for every home garden or flower bed. They use up much needed nutrients and minerals that other plants need and in severe cases, that includes water and possibly sunlight that would feed other plants. Planning the landscape of your garden can also be helpful to deter weeds (as well as insects) from thriving near your home. And on the subject of insects, by keeping weeds out of the garden, one goes a long way towards keeping pest from the garden as well.

Inexperienced weed pulling is often ineffective and in the long term it can take too much time especially if you are maintaining a large property or have weeds that are particularly difficult to remove. In such cases you can use a weed killer. Non selective weed killers are designed to kill any plants they are sprayed on down to the root. When using these kinds of weed killers always exercise caution and follow the directions.

One of the best non selective herbicides to use is a glyphosate based herbicide, these herbicides will kill any plant they are sprayed on, but you should take proper precautions. Even though it is designed to kill plants it could potentially harm your skin, it always a safe assumption that any type of herbicides and pesticides could cause harm to your skin.

Some herbicide safety tips

Own a set of ‘landscaping’ clothes, using light breathable clothing that covers your arms to your wrist, and your legs to your ankle. These clothes will be your gardening clothes, they don’t need to be expensive or fancy, make sure they are comfortable above all else! Normally the precautions only require glove use if it takes longer than thirty minutes, but I always wear gloves regardless of duration.

If you are treating a very large area with a sprayer designed for spraying a large amount of glyphosate herbicide, then you will need some protective equipment for your eyes and your lungs. You can use a respirator mask and goggles. DO NOT go cheap on your safety, spending fifty dollars for a good mask is better than being hospitalized with burning lungs and red eye balls, and even if you recover you will be stuck with a $25,750 hospital bill! Always take whatever measures are needed to protect yourself when doing any kind of do it yourself pest control. As a final note on the matter, you may also need to take note of the weather. On a windy day sprays can fall on not only yourself, but on other plants that you may want to keep!

Luis Alberto Simauchi Jr. is an inbound marketing specialist at Do My Own Pest Control

3 Advantages Of Native Landscapes

Home owners should be concerned not only about the aesthetics of their landscapes, but also about the content.

I am going to go ahead and say this in spite of my friends in the landscape industry who think otherwise:

All landscaping should be done using only plants native to the area.

I trust that they will forgive me for swimming  against the tide. Many of them are coming to agree, and I suspect that many more will follow as the weight of science and public opinion come to bare.

There are at least 3 very good reasons why:

Native landscapes help the homeowner

Yuapon Holly Is native to this area.
Plants like this Yaupon Holly are native to my area, and can be used in many ways in the landscape.

Native plants do well in landscapes because they are native. It is really that simple. Because natives have become established over hundreds of years, they have adapted to the conditions in which they grow, and are therefore resistant to native pests, acclimated to local weather patterns, including rainfall, and are comfortable with the fertility levels of their native soils. This means little expense in the areas of irrigation, labor, pest control, and fertilizer.

By contrast, non native plants are generally ill suited to one or more of those climatic factors. They may flounder and require much more of one element or other, requiring more time, effort, and expense than their native counterparts. On the other hand, they may flourish in the new environment to the point of dominating it. Expenses rise in relation to the difficulty of keeping such plants alive, or keeping them from taking over the landscape.

Native landscapes help the environment

Because native plants in the home landscape require little beyond what nature affords them, the elements which are typically thought to be damaging to our environment are needed less often, if at all. The impact of introducing fewer pesticides, less fertilizer, and less wasted water spread out over millions of home lawns throughout the country would be a positive step toward easing the strain on our planet.

Introduced plants may not only add more of a strain to resources that can be ecologically damaging, but they may also escape into the wild and cause problems with the environmental ballance in an area. There are many cases where they have done so. Invasive species have developed near mono-cultures in many areas, removing both native plant life and the animals that depended on them for survival.

Native landscapes do both at the same time

Native landscaping saves money and help the environment simultaneously. There are few examples of such synergy in most fields  It is the perfect marriage of good economic and environmental policy for the home owner.

What’s Involved in Setting up Your Own Bird Sanctuary

Guest Author: Jesse Burns

Most families especially kids love the idea of keeping animals as pets. When it comes to birds, you may have a lot of factors to consider before you can actually set up and maintain a hygienic environment for your winged friends. The ideal setup these days is no longer your classic metallic and wired bird cage hanging from the ceiling indoors, especially when you have better and bigger options available from sites like SimplySheds. Aside from the aesthetic appearance, a more important consideration is the prevention of bird-related diseases such as psittacosis that can result from the unhygienic practice of keeping birds as pets. If you have the space outdoors, you may be better off setting up your bird sanctuary far from the main house so that exposure to the risk of health hazards is kept to a minimum.

The size and design of your bird dwelling will depend largely on what species you are planning to have, the main reason why you’ve decided to set up this dwelling (for breeding versus safekeeping) and the weather conditions of your location. Modern outdoor aviary sheds, ideal for places that enjoy mild climate, are generally made of the same material as all other stainless-steel  sheds, only the openings have been specially enclosed with a wire-mesh to keep air coming in and the birds from flying out. A lot of these sheds have special internal partitions to accommodate various types of species you wish to have, so decide first on how many bird types you want to keep and get the shed type that has at least that same number of partitioned spaces.

One of the most important considerations in choosing the particular design you are going to go for is the ease of cleaning involved. Because cleaning after these birds is one chore you will not want to neglect because you want to keep your surroundings immaculately clean and healthy at all cost, you will want to make sure that the chore is not going to be difficult to perform. All areas should be easy to reach, and there should be no crevices or awkward gaps in the floors, walls, and ceilings where bird droppings and other wastes can settle and accumulate. The modern version that makes use of uncoated galvanized steel has made cleaning after bird droppings easier and more enjoyable to perform. Read up on guidelines provided for by your local government on how to clean your aviaries the right way (the City of Newcastle site).
The strategic placement of your outdoor shed is also a factor to consider when setting up your bird sanctuary. Take the time to assess every square meter of your garden so that you can find that one place that avoids strong winds but will soak in a lot of the sun’s rays.

In designing this dwelling place, you will want it to look as natural as possible despite the galvanized steel sections and wire mesh present all throughout. Adding plants is one way of doing so. Choose plants that are native to your country so that you won’t have to worry about them too much—they are much easier to maintain than exotic plants, for sure. Keep in mind that some plants can be poisonous to your birds, so ask your local nursery expert about this to avoid fatal accidents in your aviary.

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Author’s Bio:

Jesse Burns loves music, but he’s also into sheds and shed-building projects for the home. He blogs for a company called http://www.simplysheds.com.au/ – Australia’s leading garden sheds and garage company. Find out about aviary sheds here.

Home And Garden Advice For The Real World!